Women's Careers Start Stalling Around Age 28 — But Why?

major survey by British organization Opportunity Now seeks to uncover why women's careers stall in their 30s, according to the Guardian. Wait, this is a thing? Here I've been assuming my 30s were when things were going to start getting good. But recent research suggests that it's in this decade that women's promotions and raises start really lagging behind those of their male peers.

In our early 20s, women earn almost as much as men and make up an equal percentage of high earners. It's in the later 20s that the wage gap starts to widen, according to Opportunity Now, and by age 45 women earn an average of 28 percent less than male colleagues. People have surmised all sorts of reasons for this, but the fact is that no one knows for sure the reason things start to go differently for 30-somethings in the workplace. In a bid to understand better, Opportunity Now plans to survey 100,000 women about their work experiences and goals. They're calling the campaign "Project 28-40." 

The chair of Opportunity Now, Helena Morrissey, told the Guardian women ages 28 to 40 are in the "danger zone" for career development. The survey "will help us all really understand the reasons behind the current imbalance. We could just plough on, but I think we must be off-target with some of the things we are doing," she says. 

In related gender gap news: A U.S. survey released today found that women with children under 18 earn less than women who don't. Men with kids under 18, however, earn more than men without kids at home. 

Image: stefan1981/Flickr

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